Title:
Court soccer
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An intense and athletic game employing skills typical of soccer played generally under the rules of handball or racquetball. The court game primarily requires use of the feet to advance the ball to the court front wall but also other parts of the body except extended hands and arms to receive the ball off a front court wall and control and ready it in preparation for returning it to the front wall without the ball contacting the floor outside the conditions allowed in normal court games such as racquetball. The game can be played using a small soccer ball but more ideally it is played with a smaller ball more conducive to court conditions and walls.



Inventors:
Birks, John R. (Seattle, WA, US)
Application Number:
10/247031
Publication Date:
03/25/2004
Filing Date:
09/19/2002
Assignee:
BIRKS JOHN R.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A63B67/00; A63B71/04; (IPC1-7): A63B67/00
View Patent Images:
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Primary Examiner:
ARYANPOUR, MITRA
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
David L Tingey (Covington, WA, US)
Claims:

What is claimed is:



1. A method of playing a game in an enclosed court having a floor, front and rear walls, and side walls with a resilient ball between opposing teams having a preselected number of players, comprising the steps of: a. one of said players of a first team beginning play by kicking the ball off the front wall, directly or indirectly; b. a receiving player from a second team receiving the ball in play off the front wall, directly or indirectly, by the receiving player contacting the ball with a part his body other than his extended arms or hands before the ball contacts the floor more than once; c. the receiving player advancing, or contacting with the intent to advance, the ball to the front wall, directly or indirectly, with a part his body other than his extended arms or hands without the ball contacting the floor after the receiving player's last touch of the ball; d. a different player from a team other than the second team then receiving the ball off the front wall; e. said different player returning the ball to the front wall, directly or indirectly, without the ball contacting the floor after said different player's last touch of the ball with a player from a team other than the team of said different player then becoming the receiving player; f. repeating said receiving and return of said ball by said players until end of play when said ball fails to successfully return to the front wall without the ball contacting the floor after a receiving player's last touch of the ball; g. if the last player to successfully return the ball to the front wall was on the same team as began play, counting a score to that team and the same player again beginning play by kicking the ball off the front wall, directly or indirectly; h. if the last player to successfully return the ball to the front wall was not on the same team as began play, a player other than the player that last began play begins play by kicking the ball off the front wall, directly or indirectly; i. repeating steps a. through i. until a team accrues a predetermined number of scores.

2. The method of claim 1 wherein step d. further comprises the step of allowing the receiving player at his discretion to bounce the ball from the floor after receiving it and before contacting it with the intent to return it to the front wall.

3. The method of claim 1 wherein step d. further comprises the step of allowing the receiving player at his discretion to juggle the ball between parts of his body other than extended arms and hands after receiving it and before contacting it with the intent to return it to the front wall.

4. The method of claim 3 where in juggling the ball, the user is allowed to contact the ball a total of three times including his last contact with the ball in advancing it to the front wall.

5. The method of claim 1 wherein the ball may contact one or more walls, the rear wall or a ceiling before the opposing player receives the ball, whether or not the ball also contacts the floor.

6. The method of claim 1 wherein the ball may contact one or more walls, the rear wall or a ceiling before it contacts the front wall either on beginning play or on returning the ball to the front wall after receiving it.

7. The method of claim 1 wherein play is begun by said player beginning play standing in one or more designated serve zones in the court and bouncing the ball to the floor and then kicking the ball to the front wall.

8. The method of claim 7 in which the serve zone is forward of a short line on the floor parallel to the front wall and in which upon beginning play the ball must contact the floor rearward of the short line before a defending player contacts the ball.

9. The method of claim 7 in which upon beginning play defending players may not cross the short line before the ball contacts the floor behind the short line.

10. The method of claim 1 further including the step of ending play without a change in server and without scoring a point because a defending player interferes with a player attempting to return the ball to the front wall either by contacting the player or the ball.

11. The method of claim 1 further including the step of ending play without a change in server and without scoring a point because a defending player commits a violation of rules of play.

12. The method of claim 1 wherein each team comprises a single player.

13. The method of claim 1 wherein step h. includes the step of a different player from the team last beginning play next beginning play after an end of play and before a player from an opposing team begins play.

14. The method of claim 1 wherein three teams play simultaneously and wherein any player from a team other than the last player to successfully returning the ball to the front wall may receive the ball and attempt to return it to the front wall.

15. The method of claim 1 wherein each team comprises two players.

16. A method of playing a game in an enclosed court having a floor, front and rear walls, and side walls with a resilient ball between opposing teams having a preselected number of players, comprising the steps of: a. one of said players of a first team beginning play by kicking the ball off the front wall, directly or indirectly, while standing in one or more designated serve zones in the court and bouncing the ball to the floor and then kicking the ball to the front wall, the ball permissibly contacting one or more walls or a ceiling but not a rear wall before it contacts the floor, the serve zone being forward of a short line on the floor and parallel to the front wall wherein upon beginning play the ball must contact the floor rearward of the short line before an opposing player contacts the ball; b. a player from a second team receiving a ball in play off the front wall, directly or indirectly, behind the short line before the ball contacts the floor behind the short line more than once by the receiving player contacting the ball with a part his body other than his extended arms or hands, the ball permissibly contact one or more walls, the rear wall or a ceiling before the opposing player receives the ball, whether or not the ball also contacts the floor before the player receiving the ball does so; c. without use of his extended arms or hands, the receiving player contacting the ball with a part his body other than his extended arms or hands with the intent to return the ball to the front wall, directly or indirectly, without the ball contacting the floor after the player's last touch of the ball; the ball permissibly contacting one or more walls, the rear wall or a ceiling before it contacts the front, d. a different player from a team other than the second team then receiving the ball off the front wall, allowing this receiving player at his discretion to bounce from the floor after receiving the ball and before contacting the ball with the intent to return the ball to the front wall, and further allowing the receiving player at his discretion to juggle the ball between parts of his body other than extended arms and hands after receiving it and before contacting it with the intent to return it to the front wall but without advancing the ball to the front wall while juggling, e. said different player returning the ball to the front wall, directly or indirectly, without the ball contacting the floor after said different player's last touch of the ball; f. repeating said receiving and return of said ball by said players until end of play when said ball fails to successfully return to the front wall; g. if play ends because a defending player interferes with a player attempting to return the ball to the front wall either by contacting the player or the ball or if a player commits a different violation such as touching the ball with an extended arm or hand, the play begins again without a score and with the same player serving the ball; h. if the last player to successfully return the ball to the front wall was on the same team as began play, accounting a score to that team and the same player again begins play by kicking the ball off the front wall, directly or indirectly; i. if the last player to successfully return the ball to the front wall was not on the same team as began play, a player other than the player that last began play begins play by kicking the ball off the front wall, directly or indirectly; j. repeating steps a. through i. until a team accrues a prescribed number of scores.

17. The method of claim 1 in which the ball comprises a material on its out surface hard enough to sustain repeated kicks of substantial force while not marking or damaging court walls.

18. The method of claim 17 in which the ball is resilient with bouncing characteristics such that it cannot be kicked to the front wall, bounce to the back wall, and then bounce back to the front wall off the back wall without first contacting the floor.

19. The method of claim 17 in which the ball is smaller than an outdoor soccer ball.

Description:

BACKGROUND OF THE INVENTION

[0001] 1 Field of the Invention

[0002] The present invention relates to a game played in an enclosed court without the use of extended hands or arms to effect movement of a ball about the court that is played by combining some of the aspects of soccer and racquetball or handball.

[0003] 2. Prior Art

[0004] The game of soccer is played between two opposing teams on an outdoor field a ball is advanced by players by contacting any part of the body except extended arms or hands. Racquetball and handball is played by teams of one or two players each moving a ball about an enclosed court with a racquet or a gloved hand.

[0005] There have been different variations of games that introduce soccer style of play to an indoor game, such as arena soccer. Court soccer similarly introduces another variation of soccer style play by bringing the game into a court typically used for racquetball and handball and other court games. The increased difficulty introduced in this form of soccer played in a court focuses on receiving, dribbling and shooting skills typical in soccer and increases the pace of the game.

[0006] The game is preferably played with a specially constructed ball. There are many balls that could be used for the game but not particularly suited to the game. Normal soccer balls are designed to sustain repeated kicks, often with substantial force. The resulting ball, though resilient, is firm with relatively thick outer materials able to withstand the force and scuffing of a hard kick with a shoe. Such a ball tends to damage finished walls of a racquetball court. A soccer ball is also hard with air pressure conducive to achieving distance with a hard kick. Such a ball kicked as hard in a racquetball court could be kicked to court front wall, back to the rear wall and back to the front wall without contacting the floor. This would defeat the court game that requires the opposing player to receive the ball and himself advance it to the front wall. If the player is not given the opportunity to do so, the game is of little interest. Soft balls such as a volleyball, a racquetball, a handball or even a soft rubber playground ball such as children might use in the game of foursquare are less damaging to a court but do not tolerate repeated hard kicks.

SUMMARY OF THE INVENTION

[0007] An intense and athletic game employing skills typical of soccer in a court game played generally under the rules of handball or racquetball in an enclosed racquetball court. The court game primarily requires use of the feet to advance the ball to the court front wall but also other parts of the body except extending hands and arms to receive the ball off a front court wall and control and ready it in preparation of returning it to the front wall without the ball contacting the floor outside the conditions allowed in normal court games such as racquetball.

[0008] As in racquetball and handball, the game is typically played with one or two players on two opposing teams or one player on each of three teams.

[0009] The game can be played using a small soccer ball but more ideally it is played with a smaller ball more conducive to court conditions and walls. The ideal court soccer ball is sufficiently “dead” so it cannot be kicked to the front wall, bouncing off the back wall and back to the front wall off the back wall without first contacting the floor. That is, much of the kinetic energy carried in the ball is dissipated with each bounce off a floor or wall, at least more so than a normal soccer ball such that the ball cannot return to the front wall before first contacting the floor, even with the hardest of kicks. Yet the ball still is constructed to sustain hard kicks with a shoe.

[0010] This court soccer ball would be inappropriate for outdoor or even arena, or indoor, soccer because of its different resiliency. Designed to not bounce as well, it also then does not kick as far. It is also designed of an outer material hard enough to sustain repeated kicks but soft enough to not damage court walls. In a normal soccer field, which might typically have rough dirt and small rocks, this ball would not last and would not be appropriate.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0011] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of two opposing players within a typical court.

[0012] FIG. 2 is a cut-away view of a section of the preferred ball.

[0013] FIG. 3 is a logic flow chart outlining the rules of play.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE EMBODIMENTS

[0014] The present invention relates to an indoor court game. Referring to the figures, the game is played with a small soccer ball, such as a No. 4 soccer ball, or a preferred ball especially constructed for court use but possessing the strength to sustain repeated kicking without damaging the court.

[0015] The rules of the game require the ball to be advanced without use of hands or arms. That is, the player is only allowed to kick the ball or contact the ball with a part of the player's body other than extended arms or hands.

[0016] The invention then comprises a method of playing a game in an enclosed court. The court is typically, but necessarily, a regulation racquetball court having a floor 10, front and rear walls 12 and 14, and side walls 16 and 18. The game is played with a resilient ball 20 between opposing teams having a preselected number of players. Typically, there are two teams with one or two players on a team, but the game can also be played with three teams of one person each.

[0017] Play is begun by a player 100 serving the ball 20 by bouncing the ball to the floor 10 and then kicking the ball to the front wall 12 with the server's foot (or leg). The player serving the ball 20 must be standing in one or more designated serve zones 22 in the court, typically midcourt on each side. The play may not step over a forward boundary 24 of the serve zone 22 when serving or rearward over a rearward boundary 25, which forward and rearward boundaries are coincident with a portion of a cross-court lines, the rearward boundary 25 known as a “short line” 26 parallel with the front wall 12; the outside boundaries are the court side walls. In a valid serve the ball must contact the floor behind, or rearward of, the short line, before the ball contacts the floor. As shown in FIG. 3, if the ball does not first contact the floor behind the short line, shown in box 11, and in front of the back wall, the server is given another opportunity, as given in box 21. However, after a second successive failure to properly serve the ball, box 12, the server loses his serve, box 20. During the serve defending players may not cross the short line 26 before the ball contacts the floor behind the short line. The serve ends the ball passes the short line and the game continues in volley play until play ends upon which the ball is reserved to begin play again.

[0018] Volley play is similar to racquetball volley. After one of the players of a first team serves the ball by kicking it off the front wall, directly or indirectly, and into back court, that is, behind the short line, a player from a second team receives the ball in play off the front wall, box 13, directly or indirectly, before the ball contacts the floor more than once. Indirect play means the ball may contact one or more walls, the rear wall or a ceiling before the opposing player receives the ball, whether or not the ball also contacts the floor.

[0019] In the receiving the ball, the player may contact it with any part his body other than his extended arms or hands, which he would typically do to set up his forward kick to the front wall. That is, at his discretion the receiving player may bounce the ball twice from the floor after receiving it and before contacting the ball with the intent to return the ball to the front wall, typically through a kick or header (directed bounce from off the user's head). In doing so, he may not use his hands or arms, although the ball may contact his hands or arms when they are drawn and effectively become a part of the player's torso. He then kicks the ball to the front wall without the ball contacting the floor after the player's last touch of the ball. That is, the kicking player cannot skip the ball to the front wall. Unlike racquetball but like soccer, the receiving player at his discretion may juggle the ball between parts of his body other than extended arms and hands after receiving it and before contacting it with the intent to return it to the front wall. However, unlike soccer, he may only walk with the ball to the front wall by way of a juggle up to the limit of the allowed three of touches, including the last touch for advancing the ball to the front wall.

[0020] A different player from a team other than the team kicking the ball to the front wall then receives the ball anywhere in the court and attempts to return the ball to the front wall as did the prior player, box 15. Where more than two teams play simultaneously, any player from a team other than the last player to successfully returning the ball to the front wall may receive the ball and attempt to return it to the front wall. Volley play thus continues in repeating like receiving and return of the ball by the players until end of play. End of play occurs when a defending player interferes with a player attempting to return the ball to the front wall either by contacting the player or the ball, box 14. End of play otherwise is when the ball fails to successfully return to the front wall without skipping.

[0021] A score is counted to the serving team, box 17, if the last player to successfully return the ball to the front wall was on the serving team, box 16, and the same player again begins play with a serve, box 10. If the last player to successfully return the ball to the front wall was not on the serving team, a player other than the serving player begins play by kicking the ball off the front wall, directly or indirectly, box 20. If there is more than one play on a team, all team players serve in a chosen order before a player from another team serves. The game thus continues until a team accrues a prescribed number of scores.

[0022] The game may be played with a soccer ball but preferably it is played with a ball more conducive to court conditions. As illustrated in FIG. 2, such a ball comprises a nonmarking material 30 on its outer surface 32 such that the outer skin is hard enough to sustain repeated kicks of substantial force but does not mark or damage court walls and results in a ball with characteristics particular to court soccer. Yet it is nonresilient sufficiently that with even a hard kick the ball loses energy enough so it cannot reach to bounce off front and back walls three times without first contacting the floor at least once. Thus, the ball is soft enough to not damage court walls yet tough enough to withstand repeated hard kicks with a shoed foot and mildly resilient to bounce from either front or rear opposing walls and reach the other opposing wall, front or rear, but not a third front or rear wall.